Great Forces

Down in the construction site across the street from me
there is a pile of huge rectangle cement slabs
They are stacked three layers high,
each layer cross-hatching the one below
The slabs rest on the their long, narrow sides,
and the top slabs have an inch of worn snow
on their skyward faces
These thin strips of white make the slabs
look like ice cream sandwiches
The slabs are so heavy I don't see how they can ever be moved
So buried in snow I don't see how they can ever be extracted
And so the scene across the street below me looks ruined
Two cherry pickers parked at a distant corner, frozen to death
A pile of piping that needs a miracle to become sorted
A flimsy chain-link fence around the site
like the crotchety mood of a painter
who knows the portrait you commissioned will never be delivered
I'm giving up on behalf of it - what a waste
I can't imagine the hand that will lift it
and give it a shape, though it has given me this whole city
The terrible hand that works as deliberately as God's on the canyons
I will lounge on my little raft on the cutting stream,
dreaming as the walls grow up around me